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The Aussie market is again lower at lunch on Thursday as it falls for a third day in a row. The ASX 200 is softer by 27 points or 0.4% to 7,018 as US markets tumbled further overnight on a larger than expected spike in US April inflation. The major Wall Street indices fell by over 2% each with the teach-heavy NASDAQ sliding 2.7%.

As a result, the local technology sector has been the largest decliner on the local market with a 3.5% drop. Financials are also a drag while property, consumer discretionary, materials, industrials and communications are also in the red. Leading advances is the healthcare sector with a 1.2% lift while energy, consumer staples and utilities also rise.

A big reason for the sharp decline in the local technology sector has been a 5.2% drop in the largest buy-now paylater (BNPL) provider Afterpay (APT). The stocks is down ~28% so far in May. Another big decliner has been accounting software firm, Xero (XRO) which is 7.8% lower on the release of its FY21 profit results. Net profit soared nearly six-fold on a year ago to NZ$19.8 million from NZ$3.3 million. Revenue rose 18% to NZ$848.8 million but subscriber growth was down 2% to 456,000 from 467,000 in FY20. At its worst, the stock was 11.6% weaker.

Losses for big four banks National Bank (NAB) and Westpac (WBC) are also weighing on the ASX 200 with
NAB down 2.4% and WBC dropping 2.7% as both trade exdividend.

Graincorp (GNC) is one of the big winners for the day, jumping 6.5% with the agribusiness upgrading its FY21 earnings guidance even as it reported a fall in 1H21 statutory net profit to $50 million, down 87% as last year’s result included a one-off benefits, but underlying profit from continuing operations and excluding one-offs was up 87%.

Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) has provided a financial update as it holds an investor day. FY21 EBITS is expected between $495-$515 million and is targeting high single digit average earnings growth over the long term. TWE shares are 2.8% higher.

The Aussie dollar is a touch firmer and is buying 77.35 US cents.

Published by CommSec